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Prescott Valley shuts down four wells after positive PFAS tests

Prescott Valley shuts down four wells after positive PFAS tests

After the City of Prescott announced in July that it had shut down two of its wells near the Prescott airport  because of positive tests for Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), Prescott Valley immediately tested  all but two of its 27 wells (the two were offline). Of the 25 wells tested, four were found to have measurable  amounts of the chemicals in the water pumped. Because one of the tests was considered uncertain, the well  is being retested to ensure there was no testing error. 

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As part of an earlier Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) monitoring program, the Town had tested all its  upper system wells for these same chemicals in 2014-2015, and three wells in its lower system in 2018, with  negative results. Based on the results of this follow-up test, the Town has shut down all four of the wells that  tested positive this year and will follow up with a plan for further action that includes consulting with the  Arizona Department of Environmental Quality. 

The four wells are Little Pete and Lake Valley in central Prescott Valley, and Quailwood 2 and 3 in east  Prescott Valley. The Town’s wells are interconnected so water can be moved to different areas to serve the community during repairs or shutdowns.  

Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) are not currently regulated by the EPA, but the agency has advised that exposure to high levels of these chemicals may be harmful to human health. In June 2022, EPA  significantly reduced the health advisory levels for the chemicals. Other communities throughout Arizona and  the nation are also experiencing positive tests for PFAS with the lowered testing threshold. The chemicals are  commonly found in some grease-resistant paper such as in fast-food containers, pizza boxes, stain resistant  coatings, water resistant clothing, some cleaning and personal care products, paint products, and aqueous  firefighting foams. 

More information on PFAS may be found at: 

https://www.epa.gov/pfas

https://www.azdeq.gov/pfas-resources

Prescott Valley water is tested annually and meets all safe drinking water standards required by the Arizona  Department of Environmental Quality. View the entire water quality report at https://pv-azgov.info/3c9HDrd 

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